Although the cryptocurrency market is crowded with the likes of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Pi, Litecoin, and even Akon’s AKoin, the meteoric rise in their values has inspired some new entrants. Chia is one of the latest cryptocurrencies in the market and its USP is that it is eco-friendly. However, if this cryptocurrency becomes popular in the market, it can potentially cause a global shortage of SSDs and hard drives. Here is why.
As we know, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin can be mined using high-powered GPUs. This has caused a lot of hiccups in the supply of GPUs over the years as miners hoard high-end GPU units to run crypto farms. As a result, at one point, Nividia had to tell retailers to sell GPUs only to gamers and not cryptocurrency miners.
How Chia Can Impact SSD Supply
Now, Chia is an eco-friendly cryptocurrency created by Bram Cohen, the inventor of BitTorrent. He decided to enable users to leverage free space on their storage drives )SSDn or HDD) to mine Chia. As a result, the mining system requires a lot less power than usual GPU-backed cryptocurrency-mining rigs. However, if the said cryptocurrency blooms in the market, the SSD and HDD market could suffer the same fate as the GPU market.
The effect is already evident in Hong Kong as the country has seen a massive surge in the sales of 4TB and 8TB hard drives recently. Moreover, the high demand for SSDs and hard drives in the Hong Kong markets could also lead to a price hike for the components. As per reports, if the high demand persists, the prices of SSDs and hard drives could increase by $200 HKD (~Rs 1,920) to $600 (~Rs 5,755) HKD.
Now, fortunately, the negative impact is unlikely to hit the consumer models of the SSDs and hard drives as the current drives that are in demand are enterprise models with high endurance. This is because the Chia cryptocurrency pushes the drives with continuous reading and writing, and consumer models would be incapable of delivering constant power.
According to reports, several major SSD and HDD manufacturers are planning to implement restrictions to prevent hoarders from buying storage drives in large quantities. Moreover, one of the major storage drive manufacturers in China Jiahe Jinwei aims to release a dedicated SSD for cryptocurrency mining in the market soon.